As 2023 comes to a close, I've taken some time to reflect on the year, and I have to say it was a great year overall. The year included many conferences, several speaking engagements, and plenty of board meetings. It was a very successful year for myself and those I work with. As a franchise expert, advisor and speaker, I really enjoy the work that I do and the people I get to collaborate with. My business travel adventures started with a fun time at the IFA Convention in Las Vegas, where my wife and two daughters joined me. That was a lot of fun and the first time we've ever done that.
Overall, I saw a good pace for growth and improvements in the franchise industry this year. Most everybody started strong this year, with just a few signals of slowing in the fourth quarter.
Franchising Basics for Success
One trend I've been hearing about in recent weeks at various board meetings and events around franchising is getting "back to the basics". I believe when growth and momentum slow down, people recognize the need and opportunity to protect what they already have. Going back to the basics and reinforcing the fundamentals of your business is always a good idea and especially appropriate when franchise business growth is slowing. Lately, my clients have been focused on customer service, delivering value, managing margins, improving performance, and taking care of their people in finding new ways to reach new customers.
This year, the ZorForum franchisor masterminds have grown significantly; I now have two nearly full groups, with lots of great exchanges and information being shared. Those groups are an opportunity for me to help more people with their franchise business and create an environment for them to share in a strictly confidential environment. It's a very powerful engagement while remaining a lot of fun. I look forward to filling these groups and starting a third group in 2024.
Business Highlight of the Year
One highlight for me was being recognized by a client brand called Office Pride Commercial Cleaning and its founder, Todd Hopkins. He presented me with their Integrity Award, the highest honor they offer in their brand. I was pleasantly surprised and deeply moved by the recognition, a wonderful moment acknowledging over 10 years of hard work and impact within that brand and organization.
Personal Challenges and Gratification
Beyond that, this year held a somber note with the passing of my father-in-law at the age of 85. He was a truly remarkable and generous individual. Our family has felt his absence, and we all miss him deeply.
We did have a few family vacations this year, and this summer, we enjoyed time at the family Lake Home. Having both of my daughters home for the summer was especially fun.
I'm looking forward to a strong finish in 2023, and I believe 2024 will be at a similar pace. While entering an election year might introduce a hint of uncertainty, I remain optimistic about franchising. The evolving landscape presents new opportunities to assist individuals in growing their brands and businesses.
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John Francis of Johnny Franchise is an enthusiastic, engaging, and entertaining public speaker, advisor and franchise coach; he speaks from experience and the heart. He is the creator of the successful Franchise Lifecycle Program that will take your franchise to the next level. Franchising is in his blood, and his parents were true pioneers in the industry, turning their family haircutting business into a 1,000-salon franchise empire. He has been a franchisee and a franchisor and has a deep understanding of the issues both face. Connect with John, and you and your franchisees will learn how to look at your business in new, positive, and profitable ways.